“If [danger] ever reach us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide.” --Abraham Lincoln

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Spain, Norway, and Ireland formally recognized a Palestinian state on Tuesday, a move that doesn’t change the situation on the ground for Palestinians but is meant to pile on the international pressure on Israel.

The three European countries join over 140 nations that already recognize Palestine as a state. The recognition comes after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly rejected the idea of Palestinian statehood in any future scenario.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said in a televised address that “this is a historic decision that has a single goal, and that is to help Israelis and Palestinians achieve peace.”

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A Ukrainian intelligence source told Reuters that a Ukrainian drone targeted a radar deep inside Russian territory that’s part of Russia’s early-warning system to detect nuclear missiles. The incident marks the second time within a week that Ukrainian officials reported attacks on a Russian nuclear warning system, known as “Voronezh M” radars.

The source said that the strike targeted a radar near the city of Orsk in Russia’s Orenburg Oblast, which is over 900 miles away from Ukrainian-held territory. The source didn’t say if there was any damage, and Russian media reported a drone was downed in the Orenburg region and that no civilian infrastructure was hit.

On May 22, a Ukrainian drone targeted a Voronezh M radar in Russia’s Krasnodar Oblast at a radar station about 300 miles from Ukrainian-controlled territory. The US-state-funded RFE/RL reported there was damage to the radar site, citing satellite images, although Reuters said it could not verify the imagery.

While the Russian radars can track missiles fired by Ukraine, the primary function of the early-warning system is to detect intercontinental ballistic missiles to determine if Russia is coming under a nuclear attack. Ukraine’s targeting of the systems could lead to a major response from Russia or potentially a miscalculation as the attacks come at a time of unprecedented nuclear tensions between Washington and Moscow.

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The Biden administration is attempting to rally its allies to strengthen sanctions aimed at disrupting the relationship between Russia and China. Washington has increasingly attempted to use trade and financial blacklists to punish Beijing and Moscow for what the White House views as malign behavior, although with little success. 

White House Deputy National Security Adviser For International Economics Daleep Singh made the threat on Tuesday. “To be clear, we have no desire to disrupt all trade between Russia and China, but we and our partners are prepared to use our sanctions and our export controls to prevent the trade of goods and technologies that threaten our collective security,” he said.

According to the US official, Washington and its allies are considering changing the language of existing sanctions to broaden their impact and placing secondary sanctions on organizations that violate the American blacklist. 

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On a misty November morning 21 years ago, I was desperately trying to remain camouflaged. Concealed in the foliage of an orange grove in Israel’s rural Galilee, I hurriedly took photos of a drab concrete building not marked on any map.

Even the original road sign identifying the site as Facility 1391 had been removed after a local Haaretz newspaper investigation revealed it housed a secret prison.

I was the first foreign journalist to track down Facility 1391, most of it hidden within a heavily fortified complex built in the 1930s to suppress resistance to British rule in Palestine.

For decades, Israel had secretly held mostly Arab foreign nationals captive at the site, unknown to the Israeli courts, the Red Cross and human rights groups. Many were Lebanese citizens kidnapped during Israel’s 18-year occupation of southern Lebanon. But there were also Jordanians, Syrians, Egyptians and Iranians.

This site would soon be known as a “black site”, a term popularised by Washington’s invasion of Iraq that year. Drawing on techniques refined by Israel at Facility 1391, the US would, in the coming months and years, torture Iraqis and others at Abu Ghraib and Camp X-Ray in Guantanamo.

No one knew how many captives were held in Israel’s Facility 1391, how long they had been there or if there were more such prisons.

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Sometimes it seems as if we just can’t learn, even when we’re talking about America’s centers of higher learning, its colleges and universities. In mid-April — the day after being grilled and intimidated by House Republicans — Columbia University’s president Nemat “Minouche” Shafik decided not to listen to, or even negotiate with, her own students. Instead, she called in the police to dismantle a peaceful tent encampment protesting the horrors then underway in Gaza. For anyone who remembers the past history of on-campus antiwar protests, it was almost ludicrously predictable that, in doing so, she would launch a set of remarkably peaceful protests on more than 500 campuses nationwide that, despite the arrival of so many police on campus and nearly 3,000 arrests, have yet to end (and, in fact, have spread elsewhere on the planet).

And talking about not learning, imagine this: Last October 7th, the Israelis had a thoroughly grim set of war crimes committed against them by Hamas. Their response would prove to be a set of crimes so staggering that they’ve left Hamas’s horrors — and they were horrors of the first order — in the shade, removing almost all sympathy for Israel globally.

Sound familiar? And the thing we so often forget, whether the subject is Israel and Gaza or student protests in this country, is that when such horrors occur, there’s always a history that has, in some grim fashion, prepared the way for them.

With that in mind, consider Michael Gould-Wartofsky’s latest piece on the all too many increasingly armed camps that now pass for colleges and universities. Such campuses, barricaded, walled off, and sometimes occupied by local police, don’t come out of the blue either. In fact, Gould-Wartofsky has been writing about the creation of just such a “homeland security campus” for TomDispatch since 2008 — about the creation, that is, of what, by 2012, he was already calling Repress U.~ Tom Engelhardt

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Israel's media has been concealing the difficult figures and pictures of the Gaza war. The latest announcement from the army about the Rafah strike should also be taken with skepticism. Unless you are a devoted consumer of Israeli media

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Palestinians mourn relatives killed in an overnight Israeli strike on a camp for internally displaced people in Rafah, at the city's Tal al-Sultan clinic morgue on May 27, 2024.

Amira Hass




It was reported on Monday afternoon that the Israel Defense Forces did not expect or estimate that civilians would be hit in the strike on Rafah. Such a disingenuous announcement can only be issued to consumers of the same media that for seven months has been hiding the unbearably difficult figures and photographs of toddlers who were killed or injured in every Israeli strike on the Gaza Strip. Such a statement can only persuade Israelis that this time too, the targets of the strike and the kind of munitions selected were scrupulously chosen by the Shin Bet security service, Military Intelligence and the IDF.
It's very possible that Israelis who don't support Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also would like to believe that this time, he was completely sincere when he said that this was a tragic mistake. It's also very possible that they won't suspect that he referred to it only because of the recent order to halt military operations in Rafah issued by the very International Court of Justice in The Hague that's hanging over his head and the heads of the Israeli judiciary.
According to the IDF Spokesperson's Unit, this strike had two targets: Yassin Abu Rabia and Khaled Al-Najjar. Abu Rabia was said to be Hamas' West Bank staff commander, and Al-Najjar was a senior staff officer. Both men were said to have carried out attacks in the early 2000s and transferred funds for terrorism. It was stated that Abu Rabia's attacks killed soldiers and Al-Najjar's attacks murdered Israeli civilians and wounded soldiers. By the way, it's the IDF Spokesperson's Unit that distinguishes between "killing soldiers" and "murdering civilians."
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The Biden campaign faced nonstop heckles and jeers during a press conference outside the Manhattan criminal court where former President Donald Trump is listening to closing arguments in his hush money trial.

Joining Biden’s team were “special guests” Michael Fanone and Harry Dunn, two highly political and attention-seeking Jan. 6 Capitol police officers, and far-left actor Robert De Niro, who warned that Trump, if elected, “could destroy the world.”

The actor,  who arrived at the presser wearing a face mask, seemed angry and rattled by the cacophonous anti-Biden catcalls.

“I mean this is really … even these people over here are kinda … it’s kinda crazy,” De Niro complained when it was his turn to speak. “This thing, Donald Trump, has created this,” the actor added bitterly. “He should be telling them not to do this … but he wants to sow total chaos.”

Struggling to be heard over loud chants of  “f-ck Joe Biden!,” De Niro accused Trump of wanting “to destroy not only the city, but the country, and eventually, he could destroy the world.”

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While Democrat U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar of Texas voted in favor of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, he also has family in law enforcement and, of course, supports police.

Those opposing forces were at play when three armed thugs carjacked Cuellar in Washington, D.C., last October. The congressman wasn't hurt, and his vehicle was recovered — but soft-on-crime approaches to law enforcement took a beating. Fox News said conservatives reacted to Cuellar's scary encounter with calls to confront rapidly rising crime in D.C.

'This chaos is the result of Democrat-led soft-on-crime policies, no different than their Open Border debacle.'

"Rep. Cuellar was carjacked near my same DC apartment building," GOP U.S. Rep. Burgess Owens of Utah posted at the time, according to Fox News. "This chaos is the result of Democrat-led, soft-on-crime policies, no different than their Open Border debacle. It's time for Democrats to start taking the safety of Americans seriously."

What's more, the National Republican Congressional Committee in March 2023 said 173 House Democrats supported reduced sentences for violent crimes.

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The Las Vegas shooting on October 1, 2017, remains shrouded in controversy, with many believing in a cover-up involving multiple shooters. Investigative journalist Mindy Robinson's documentary, "Route 91: Uncovering the Cover-Up of the Las Vegas Mass Shooting," brings new evidence to light, featuring nine police bodycam footage clips that allegedly capture additional shots fired after the attack was supposedly over. These revelations have intensified public scrutiny and raised urgent questions about the official investigation's completeness. Despite mounting pressure, the police have yet to provide clear answers, fueling further speculation and calls for transparency. Will we ever uncover the full truth behind the Las Vegas shooting?

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Nikki Haley Visits Israel, Writes ‘Finish Them’ on Israeli Artillery Shell

Trump recently said that he's sure Haley will be on 'his team'

Former Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley wrote “finish them” on an Israeli artillery shell during a visit to Israel to show her staunch support for the Israeli slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza and the Israeli bombing campaign in southern Lebanon.

“America stands by Israel. Israel is fighting the enemies of the US today. Don’t stop until you win,” Haley said during a visit to Israel’s northern border, where she signed the artillery shell.

Haley was accompanied by Danny Danon, a member of the Knesset and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party. Danon made headlines last November for co-authoring an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal that called for the US and other Western countries to take in Palestinian refugees, which would help facilitate the Netanyahu government’s desire to ethnically cleanse the Gaza Strip.

Haley visited southern Israel a day earlier and made a baseless claim that Iran, Russia, and China were all responsible for the October 7 Hamas attack. Without providing any evidence, she said the attack “was orchestrated by Iran. It was helped with Russian intelligence. And it was fueled by money from China. Don’t deny that.”

Haley, who served as the US ambassador to the UN during the Trump administration, endorsed former President Trump after dropping out of the presidential race. Trump recently hinted that Haley would have a spot in the next administration if he wins in November.

“I think she’s going to be on our team because we have a lot of the same ideas, the same thoughts,” Trump said after Haley said she would vote for him. “I appreciated what she said. You know, we had a nasty campaign, it was pretty nasty. But she’s a very capable person, and I’m sure she’s going to be on our team in some form, absolutely.”

Claire's Observations:IF Ambassador Hailey, and President Trump seriously believe this codswallop, indicated above, then the US and this world, are in for one hell of a ride come January of 2025:and I don't mean a pleasant one, either.  

Does she not understand, that the primary targets of Israel's Killing machine, FKA the IDF, are primarily women and children?!? She's a mom herself, with a young boy and girl.    But her note of "Finish them", on the Israeli shells, most probably translates as dead and maimed for life for young Palestinians, particularly  the little ones, just on the cusp of death, courtesy of opportunistic bacteria and viruses.

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Rational people have known for decades that Joe Biden is a bottom-feeding, D.C. swamp creature that few people really liked. He has scammed his way through the halls of Congress and the White House only to enrich himself while ignoring the true needs of the American people.

While that may be the opinion of one writer, the truth about Biden and how people feel about him has been documented for the entirety of his presidency. He has failed miserable on so many fronts that voter polls are hitting him hard.

Democrats have even more to fear in the upcoming presidential election after Biden fell further from the graces of the American people. He matched an historic record for how much people dislike him.

From the Washington Examiner:
A Reuters/Ipsos poll released Tuesday found that just 36% of people approve of Biden’s job as president, tying his record low-performance rating in July 2022. The new rating is a decrease of 2 percentage points from one month prior.

Biden started with a positive approval rating, which he held until August 2021, after which it never recovered.

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What appears to be a simple misunderstanding was apparently blown out of proportion by school officials with Christian McGhee, 16, being punished. He made a simple query about the topic of a class discussion and was booted from school for three days.

What horrible thing did this young man do to deserve a three-day suspension? He used the term “illegal aliens” during class while asking the teacher for clarification on a vocabulary assignment. A student complained about his word choice and the school punished him for his query, despite him and another student saying that the whole situation was no big deal.

An assistant principal decided McGhee’s conduct was a big deal and issued the suspension. What the uninformed school official didn’t know is that the term “alien” is defined in 8 USC 1101 as “any person not a citizen or national of the United States.” The term “illegal aliens” is used in multiple parts of the United States Code.

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Lunden Roberts, the woman who had an out-of-wedlock child with Hunter Biden, will release a tell-all book about their relationship amid this summer's Democratic National Convention. 

On Tuesday, Skyhorse Publishing announced Out of the Shadows: My Life Inside the Wild World of Hunter Biden, which will be released on August 20. 

The book teases a 'rollercoaster ride of a relationship' between Hunter and Roberts, who gave birth to five-year-old Navy Joan in August 2018. 

'He was sitting there wearing nothing but parrot boxer briefs, organizing his pipes on his Rosemont Seneca desk,' Roberts wrote, in a brief excerpt shared. 'I was sitting in Barack Obama's actual chair from the Senate floor.' 

'I took another look at Hunter - this kind, intense, and startlingly transparent man - and thought, "this is definitely a guy I want to get to know better,"' Roberts recalled.

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While keeping in mind the old adage "It's not the votes that count, but who counts the votes," Democrats are absolutely freaking out about what a dumpster fire Joe Biden is heading into the 2024 election.

According to Politico, "A pervasive sense of fear has settled in at the highest levels of the Democratic Party over President Joe Biden’s reelection prospects, even among officeholders and strategists who had previously expressed confidence about the coming battle with Donald Trump."

And while Democrats have spent 2024 on a "joyless and exhausting grind," now, nearly five months away from the election, "anxiety has morphed into palpable trepidation," according to more than a dozen party leaders and operatives who spoke with the outlet.

"You don’t want to be that guy who is on the record saying we’re doomed, or the campaign’s bad or Biden’s making mistakes. Nobody wants to be that guy," said one Democratic operative close to the White House, adding that Biden's terrible polling "are creating the freakout."

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Migrants being stored in fancy New York City hotels didn't seem to make much sense, did it? Why would these hotels willingly surrender business from their high class patrons to take in migrants?

Now we have our answer, and it's the same answer it always is: money.

A former hotel worker told Fox News on Monday that the hotels involved in the resettlement of illegal immigrants "are making lots of money through New York City’s shelter program for illegal immigrants", the Daily Caller reported

The worker, Carlos Arellano, said that "everybody's loving this because the money is just going around and around.”

In fact, the report says that the average price of a hotel room increased from $277.92 in 2022 to $301.61 in 2023. Additionally, over 130 hotels have participated in the city's shelter program by accommodating migrants.

Webmaster addition: Attention illegal immigrants. As soon as the election is over, even if the Democrats control the government, the free goodies will stop!

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If we want our country to be safe and powerful, we should start on the firm foundations of respect for peace, human life, and other nations’ sovereignty.

During Bush’s years as president, Democrats frequently criticized his foreign policy, complaining that he acted like a cowboy, pursuing wars unilaterally without the imprimatur of the “international community.” Internationalism was a particular obsession of 2004 Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry, who lambasted the Bush administration for snubbing the United Nations and upsetting France with its Iraq policy.

Obama was mostly a darling of foreign leaders, as he ceded American power and prestige in a bid to right what he considered the historic wrongs of colonialism and western chauvinism. This was evident in his obsession with completing the Iran deal, participating in the Kyoto accords, assisting NATO attacks on Libya and Syria, and in the general tone of public diplomacy during the Arab Spring.

That said, America made quite a few interventions in the Obama years, especially in the second term, and we largely called the shots.

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The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is planning to virtually nominate President Biden ahead of the party’s convention after the Ohio state Legislature deadlocked on a fix last week to get the president on the ballot in November.

DNC Chair Jaime Harrison announced Democrats would be holding a virtual roll call to ensure Biden gets on the ballot in all 50 states — an announcement made on the same day Ohio state lawmakers returned to the Capitol for a special session to solve Biden’s ballot access issue. 

Joe Biden will be on the ballot in Ohio and all 50 states, and Ohio Republicans agree. But when the time has come for action, they have failed to act every time, so Democrats will land this plane on our own,” Harrison said in a statement.

“Through a virtual roll call, we will ensure that Republicans can’t chip away at our democracy through incompetence or partisan tricks and that Ohioans can exercise their right to vote for the presidential candidate of their choice,” he added.

Webmaster addition: Actually, it was the Democrats' incompetence and partisan tricks that made this mess.

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As Russian forces steadily advance in the Kharkiv region, it is becoming ever more clear that the Ukraine war has been a disaster for the U.S. defense machine, and not just because our aid has failed to save Ukraine from retreat and possible defeat. More importantly, the war has pitilessly exposed our defense system’s deep, underlying, faults.

Critics have long maintained that our obsession with technologically complex weapons inevitably yields unreliable systems produced in limited numbers because of their predictably high cost. They are furthermore likely to fail in combat because of the military’s lack of interest in adequate testing (lest realistic tests reveal serious shortcomings and thereby threaten the budget.) The unforgiving operational test provided by the Ukraine war has shown that the critics were absolutely right. Successive “game changing” systems - such as the Switchblade drone, the M-1 Abrams tank, Patriot air defense missiles, the M777 howitzer, the Excalibur guided 155 mm artillery round, the HIMARS precision missile, GPS-guided bombs, and Skydio drones endowed with artificial intelligence, were all dispatched to “the fight,” as the military like to call it, with fanfare and high expectations. All were destined to fail for reasons rooted in the fundamental problems cited above.

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The Middle East – or what should more accurately be called West Asia – is a pivotal region of the globe. It is home to the primary source of the planet’s most important commodity: oil. Not coincidentally, it is also the epicenter of global conflicts.

Since 9/11, the United States has launched a series of attacks on sovereign nations, from Afghanistan and Iraq to Libya, Syria and beyond. These wars have left the region beleaguered and broken. But recently, as American power wanes, a new set of forces has emerged. An axis led by Iran, Syria and Yemen has emerged to counter U.S.-Israeli dominance and global giants, such as China and Russia, are increasingly being drawn into the region.

Could this lead to a new and even brighter future for West Asia?

Tim Anderson joins the show to discuss all things West Asia. Tim is a writer, academic, and director of the Center for Counter Hegemonic Studies. His latest book, “West Asia After Washington: Dismantling the Colonized Middle East,” explores this topic.

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If you know anything about traditional Jewish ethics (i.e., Jewish ethics before a great deal of intellectual work was performed aimed at providing a rationale for Judaism as a modern religion in the West—apparent in the Wikipedia article on Jewish ethics), you know that pre-Enlightenment Jewish ethics was entirely based on whether actions applied to the ingroup or the outgroup. Non-Jews had no moral worth and could be exploited or even murdered as long as doing so did not threaten the interests of the wider Jewish community. I have written a great deal on Jewish ingroup morality, beginning with the Chapter 6 in A People That Shall Dwell Alone:

 Business and social ethics as codified in the Bible and the Talmud took strong cognizance of group membership in a manner that minimized oppression within the Jewish community, but not between Jews and gentiles. Perhaps the classic case of differential business practices toward Jews and gentiles, enshrined in Deuteronomy 23, is that interest on loans could be charged to gentiles, but not to Jews. Although various subterfuges were sometimes found to get around this requirement, loans to Jews in medieval Spain were typically made without interest (Neuman 1969, I:194), while those to Christians and Moslems were made at rates ranging from 20 to 40 percent (Lea 1906-07, I:97). Hartung (1992) also notes that Jewish religious ideology deriving from the Pentateuch and the Talmud took strong cognizance of group membership in assessing the morality of actions ranging from killing to adultery. For example, rape was severely punished only if there were negative consequences to an Israelite male. While rape of an engaged Israelite virgin was punishable by death, there was no punishment at all for the rape of a non-Jewish woman. In Chapter 4, it was also noted that penalties for sexual crimes against proselytes were less than against other Jews.

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